Monday December 2, 2013
Have you ever received a letter from a friend, a mentor or perhaps a coworker that became sacred as soon as you opened the envelope and read your name at the top of the handwritten page? It is a powerful and personal experience when words come directly to you from the heart of a deep and invested relationship.
I get letters in the mail that have been addressed to me but they arrive with bulk rate postage and a computerized personalization that is often just a bit out of sync. Do you get letters like that? They want you to sign up for a special rate credit card, or purchase an insurance policy, or fill out a form so you can win a million dollars a day for life! Those letters get tossed, often without even being opened.
But a letter that was born out of a deep relationship is different. We open them, sit down, and digest the words that flow from the page into the connecting points of life. Letters like that cause us to pay attention because relationships are important and words link people to people and hearts to hearts.
That is the message from the handful of words that open the Book of Colossians. “Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus…To God’s holy people…the faithful brothers and sisters in Christ.” Those are words that were hand written and addressed to a group of people who lived their lives in faith in the ancient city of Colossae. But in a very real (but deeply mystical) way they are words that speak directly to our journey of faith today. They are words that invite us to be connected. They are words that remind us of our identity in Christ. And they are words that call us to sit down and digest the ‘Word’ that becomes a gift for this day. They prepare us for what is to come.
We learn about the birth of John the Baptist and Jesus in the opening chapter of the Gospel of Luke. We discover that John was called to ‘prepare the way of the Lord.’ Just as an ambassador would point toward a key leader, John pointed toward Jesus to introduce the Messiah to the world. John made straight the path and invited people to watch and to wait.
Our Advent season is about waiting. But we don’t just pass the time with nothing on our minds. We wait with the knowledge that God has a Word for us. So our task is to wait as “God’s holy people…the faithful brothers and sisters in Christ” who have been called to this moment for a purpose.
Memory Verse For This Week
The Son is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation.
Missional Prayer Focus For Today:
Please pray for The Parker Task Force food ministry within our community. Ask blessings on the volunteers who serve, the clients who receive, and upon those who give so faithfully.